A Caribbean organisation is working towards to creation of a regional alcohol policy.
The Healthy Caribbean Coalition, reported today that with the support of Health Action Partnership International and the UK Health Forum, it had launched the “first of its kind regional alcohol action online network”.
The network, called CARIBAPAN – The Caribbean Alcohol Policy and Action Network, which is an electronic platform for connecting individuals, civil society organisations and other related organisations working in the field of alcohol advocacy and prevention.
“It is designed to facilitate mutual learning, strengthen individual and collective evidence-informed alcohol advocacy; and allow network of alcohol advocates to be better equipped to contribute significantly toward the development of Caribbean alcohol policy. The content of CARIBAPAN includes: resources; membership activities; events calendar; discussion forums; blogs; and polls.”
The HCC noted that alcohol was one of the world’s top three priority areas in public health and the world’s third leading cause of ill health and premature death.
“Alcohol kills over two million people worldwide every year. The WHO identifies that it is the world’s third largest risk factor for premature death, disability and loss of health.
“Success in reducing morbidity and mortality associated with alcohol consumption will require concerted efforts to influence the policy environment controlling the affordability, accessibility and attractiveness of alcohol, and to address some of the key counter influences from the alcohol industry.
“Leading civil society organisations with a track record on advocacy for alcohol policy across the globe have identified an urgent need for this work. The HCC is working with our member organisations to contribute to this agenda through meaningful dialogue aimed at driving regional policy action,” the Coalition said.
It further urged other organisations doing similar work in the area of alcohol policy or prevention to join CARIBAPAN, especially as membership is open to civil society organisations and individuals active in this area. Interested organisations or individuals can register via www.caribapan.org. (LB)